Retail in Asia

In Tech

Alibaba invites eBay CEO to speak at annual summit

Alibaba Group chairman Jack Ma’s invitation to Kobe Bryant to be a guest speaker last year at the company’s annual summit of entrepreneurs surprised some people, the NBA star not being well known for his expertise on e-commerce.

This year Alibaba is hosting a guest speaker at the annual summit whose internet industry credentials are clear – but who may be even more of a surprise: John Donahoe, president and CEO of eBay. This year’s summit, which takes place in September, will also feature California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a keynote speaker.

eBay was long Alibaba’s arch-rival in the e-commerce business. Alibaba Group’s Taobao unit overtook eBay’s Chinese unit in large part by undercutting its commission fees, causing eBay to effectively withdraw from China in 2006.